James Ward-Prowse not creating enough for Southampton attack

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Southampton midfielder James Ward-Prowse’s dip in form has coincided with a lack of goals for the Saints attack.

The 20-year-old started the season in fine form but his progress was curtailed with an injury which kept him out for a couple of months.

Since his return he has shown glimpses of his prodigous talent but during the 2-0 defeat to Liverpool on Sunday he was largely ineffective before being replaced by Sadio Mane in the second-half.

Form dip

Ward-Prowse is currently in-and-out of the Southampton team which has led to a dip in form for the Southampton academy graduate.

With his place in the team changing depending on the availability of midfielders Victor Wanyama, Morgan Schneiderlin and Steven Davis, it has been difficult for him to get a run of form and confidence together.

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Against Liverpool he was chosen by manager Ronald Koeman to occupy the number 10 role but he was unable to take the game by the scruff of the neck and was outshone by Liverpool counterpart Philippe Coutinho who was man-of-the-match.

Set-piece delivery

Although not contributing as much in open play at the moment, the big danger comes from his set-piece delivery.

Likened to the technique of David Beckham, the accuracy and pace on his crosses have caused plenty of problems for Premier League defences this season.

Davis challenge

The England under-21 international has competition for his place from the experienced Steven Davis who is one of the most underrated players in the Southampton team.

Davis brings a wealth of experience at club and international level and has been Koeman’s first-choice for much of the season, although he has recently been deployed in a deeper role.

With his delivery quality not in question, Ward-Prowse now needs to continue his development and force Koeman to give him a run in the side which will breed confidence in his play and allow him to get back to the form he showed in the early part of the campaign.

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